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Phillies Daily Journal 2010


By Max Blue

            It would have been nice to go out on a high note, and for eight tight innings it looked like everything was going to be fine; no thoughts of ending it– a late night game in San Diego; Cliff Lee had a 3-0 lead and he was dazzling, as usual; 10th win in the bag. Chase Utley homered over the far far away PETCO Park centerfield fence, Chooch Ruiz had three hits. And then it all crashed in a horrendous 9th inning and Max Blue, after due deliberation, and the ritual screaming at Charlie Manuel, pledged to himself and to the Luminous Liddy, that he had watched his last Phillies’game. Fifty-some years ago Max had pledged to stop smoking tobacco – cold turkey. On this day, June 25, 2013, following the final insult of a 10th inning loss to the San Diego Padres, after almost 80 years of baseball bliss, Max swore on the grave of Stan (the Man) Musial that he had had enough – cold turkey. It should be noted that this would break a string of nearly 1,800 consecutive Phillie’s games watched by the Blue man.

            Here is what happened: in the top of the ninth, with a runner on third and two out, Charlie let Lee hit for himself signaling that he would let Lee go for the complete game shutout even though his pitch count was over 100; Lee fanned on three pitches. But Lee was gassed though he would never admit it – single to left, double to left, exit Lee, enter Jonathan Papelbon, one of the highest paid closers in the game; his first pitch was lined to center cutting the lead to 3-2. Papelbon hitched up his pants and hit the next batter. Not to worry, the next guy hit into a double play; one more out and we win. Cue the doom clock – Papelbon throws a wild pitch; game tied. Padres win it in tenth, long after Max could no longer bear to watch.

June 25, 2013

Deptford, New Jersey


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